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Code of Conduct

DSSC puts a 'coaches code of conduct' in place because we as an organisation want to ensure that games are fair, positive and enjoyable experiences for all the children and adults involved. A soccer game should be friendly and unifying - a spirited social and athletic occasion for players, coaches, referees and spectators.

To clarify expectations, DSSC expects all coaches to conform to the following code of conduct:


  • Before, during and after the game, be an example of dignity, patience and positive spirit.
  • Before a game, introduce yourself and shake hands with both the opposing coach and the referee.
  • Understand that it is DSSC's philosophy to put the development of players above team wins and losses -coaches are charged with providing a safe and educational environment that is focused on the development of players.
  • During the game you are responsible for the sportsmanship of your players. If one of your players is disrespectful, irresponsible or overly aggressive, take the player out of the game and remind them of the correct behaviours befitting the DSSC Player Model .
  • Encourage parents to applaud and cheer for good plays by either team. Discourage them from yelling at the players from either team, and the referee.
  • During the game, you are also responsible for the conduct of all spectators rooting for your team.
  • During the game, do not address the referee at all. If you have a small issue, discuss it with the referee calmly and patiently after the game. If you have a major complaint, or if you think the referee was unfair, biased, unfit or incompetent - report your opinion to the league. Your reactions will only be taken seriously if they are presented objectively and formally.
  • After the game, thank the referee with a hand shake and congratulate the opposing team and coach - your players must do the same.
  • DSSC advises that coaches ask players to shake hands with you, the coach, before and after both practice and games. This is a part of teaching players the value of respect.


It is an organisational ambition for DSSC to be regarded as a highly respected, friendly club - a place where other communities experience a welcoming atmosphere that they look forward to returning to. Everyone associated with DSSC is responsible for ensuring that our community is recognized in this way.


We Stress two points:

1. Referees - especially young and inexperienced ones - are like your players and yourself, in that they need time to develop.  You can play an important role in helping them to improve by letting them concentrate on the game.  You can help by encouraging them, by accepting their inevitable, occasional mistakes and by offering constructive post-game comments.  On the other hand, you could discourage and demoralize the referees by criticizing their decisions, by verbally abusing them and inciting - or even accepting - your own players' overly aggressive behavior.

2. Your example - it is powerful, for better or worse.  If you insist on fair play, if you concentrate on your players' enjoyment of the game and their overall long-term development, and if you support the referee, your players and their parents will notice.  If you encourage (or allow) your players to play outside the rules, if you're overly concerned about results, if you criticize the referee harshly, your players and their parents will also notice.

Think about what you're doing during a game!  Uphold the spirit of the game!  If you follow the expectations described above, the spirit of the game will be alive and well in Dover and Sherborn, and will grow, along with the enjoyment of all.

Coaches who don't follow the expectations described above will be subject to discipline and/or removed from coaching.